I began creating Schlock Mercenary in March of 2000. That’s 18.25 years ago. It’s 91% of two decades. It’s longer than half my children have been alive. It’s longer than a lot of things.
Book 18, Mandatory Failure, is wrapping up. A week from today we’ll see the first panels of Book 19, A Function of Firepower, and as currently outlined that book should run for about as long as this one did. Sometime in or about the early summer of 2019, Book 20 will begin. That book, which will run for about the length of a book, is outlined in a manner that should wrap things up satisfactorily. The twenty-year-long (by then, anyway) Schlock Mercenary mega-arc will draw to a close.
It might be useful to consider books 18, 19, and 20 as a trilogy, especially in light of the fact that trilogy-style is the way I’m writing them. Book 18 will end with some unresolved threads, which Book 19 will pick up. Book 19 will will also end with some unresolved threads, which Book 20 will pick up.
As to what comes after Book 20, I remain firm in my twin commitments to 1) keep making Schlock Mercenary and 2) not launch another twenty-year story arc. We can talk about those plans in a couple of years. For now I have some comics to ink.
I posted the inks for the June 6th, 2018 Schlock Mercenary installment over at the Schlock Mercenary Patreon a few weeks ago.
Last week I posted the colors, sans dialog, as a work-in-progress treat for patrons.
One such patron (who in this case happens to also be a long-time friend) asked for a wallpaper. The image didn’t really lend itself to that, and about two minutes after I posted that it couldn’t really be done I figured out a nice way to do it.
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We’re in the final days of the Schlock Mercenary t-shirt project. As of this writing we’re 5% shy of being 300% funded, but more importantly we’re only fifty shirt sales away from a free shirt.
It’s a volume discount thing, and it will let us include a fourth shirt for free in the three-shirt bundle. It’s not “the manufacturer likes us, so they sent Howard a free shirt.” That would only be cool for Howard. This stretch goal is cool for everybody¹.
¹ “Everybody” here being defined as “everybody who orders the three-shirt bundle, and who thinks getting a fourth shirt would be cool.”
We’re making t-shirts again! We’re using Kickstarter, because it’s worked pretty well for us in the past, and because late last year we promised to do a t-shirt Kickstarter in February of 2018.
I know, I know. It’s not February anymore. But we were totally working on this during February, so depending on your definition of “do” (specifically, for definitions that do not require the word “launch”) we made good on our word.